Mission Accomplished: Romney Alienates the Last Demographic Support He Had

When a particular course of events follow through to their logical conclusion, it seems odd that people are surprised, or excited at the end result. When Willard Romney announced he had chosen Wisconsin Representative Paul Ryan as his running mate and candidate for vice president, it should not have surprised any American who has followed Republican politics over the past two years. Romney’s choice was a desperate attempt to woo the far right and demonstrate his conservative bona fides, but it was not the least bit surprising for several reasons. Romney had a bad week and needed a major distraction to shift attention away from his record as a vulture capitalist, failure to release his tax returns, and tenure as Massachusetts’ governor, and for a day or so there will be a wealth of analysis of Ryan’s record in Congress. However, what people need to understand is that Romney is the presumptive nominee and Ryan is nothing more than a complement to support his agenda of tax cuts for the rich and austerity for the rest of the population. What Romney did by picking Ryan though, is alienate another demographic that makes his bid for the presidency more difficult.

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Romney has spent the past six months estranging immigrants, women, the working-class, and poor Americans from the Republican Party, and choosing Paul Ryan added senior citizens to the list. When Ryan first introduced the Heritage Foundation’s budget, Path to Prosperity, his plan to privatize Medicare infuriated elderly Americans who paid into the system their entire working lives and expected the Medicare coverage they paid for only to learn Ryan proposed giving them a voucher to buy health insurance coverage on the open market. Romney supports privatization as a matter of course, so choosing the face of privatization made perfect sense from a philosophical point of view. In fact, Romney and Ryan are the perfect pairing for the GOP ticket even though pundits were calling his choice political suicide. So why choose Ryan? It is highly likely that Romney was following the Heritage Foundation’s directions to prepare America for a Ryan presidential bid in 2016.

Romney wasted little time distancing himself from Ryan’s budget even though he endorsed it earlier this year claiming it was “an excellent piece of work, and very much needed” with Romney-like calls for deep cuts in education , scientific research, clean energy, public sector workers,  and tax increases for the middle class to pay for tax cuts for the rich. In truth, Romney’s proposals are more extreme than Ryan’s regardless that Willard has been short on details that would doom his candidacy before he even officially won the nomination. What Romney did accomplish for the time being is take the spotlight off himself by putting Ryan on display as a distraction from his own despicable record; unfortunately for Willard, his respite will be short-lived.

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Romney underestimates his opponents and detractors who will have a field day tying him to Ryan’s austerity measures that will decimate the poor and middle class while exploding the deficit with unfunded tax cuts for the rich, but if he thinks anyone is forgetting his job-killing tenure at Bain Capital, disastrous record as Massachusetts governor, missing tax returns, or federal entitlements that saved the 2002 Olympics, he is making a serious mistake. Since him and Ryan are the proverbial “two peas in a pod,” there will be little time spent on Ryan because whatever criticism works for Ryan also applies to Romney. The benefit for Ryan, and the Heritage Foundation, is they get to be in the national spotlight for a little under three months to desensitize voters to a 2016 presidential run, because in choosing him, Romney did, in fact, cede the election to President Obama.

Picking Ryan did not help Romney’s problem with women voters because Ryan’s budget slashes Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and the social programs women depend on in disproportionate numbers to men. Ryan also helped cement Romney’s position as anti-immigrant because Ryan has voted against the Dream Act and takes a hard line on immigration, and his assault on the poor that he refers to as “takers” ruins any chance of support from minorities and working poor Americans hardest hit by the Republican economy. That leaves senior citizens who may have supported Romney for his “whiteness,” but by bringing Ryan on the ticket, elderly Americans will have a hard time supporting two men who intend on handing out vouchers for healthcare insurance that leaves seniors with substandard coverage and expensive co-pays that Medicare covers as part of a comprehensive health plan. So who is left to support a Romney-Ryan ticket? The wealthy who stand to gain ever-increasing tax cuts, some teabaggers, and racists who would not support the President because of his racial makeup.

Willard might get a few days rest from critics who demand he release his tax returns, but since Ryan already has a reputation as an Ayn Rand devotee whose entire ideology is rooted in protecting the so-called “makers” he calls job creators, the focus will quickly revert back to Romney’s offshore accounts and attempts to avoid paying taxes on his millions. Romney will not get a break, however, from opponents of corporate entitlements because Ryan’s budget gives tax cuts to corporations and the wealthy that Willard champions. Romney has made a grave error in picking Ryan because there is absolutely no difference between the two men and subsequently, nothing to balance out Romney’s missteps in alienating immigrants, women, working Americans, and now seniors. But he did give Ryan nearly three months in the national spotlight to prepare voters for the 2016 Paul Ryan presidential run.

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Republicans must know their presidential aspirations are fading with each passing day, and although the public will get a daily dose of Paul Ryan, it will be bitter medicine as voters learn that there is little difference between the two men and that their entire economic agenda is not creating jobs, growing the economy, or rebuilding the nation’s infrastructure, but about giving more entitlements to the rich, big oil, and corporations while they raise taxes on the poor and middle class. It is the Heritage Foundation, Koch Brothers agenda that Republicans will spend the next four years cramming down the public’s throat to prepare for 2016, and if history is any indication, they will have success convincing ignorant Americans that the same failed policies that brought about the Bush-Republican recession, will save America from eight years of the Obama Administration.

There have been indications for six months that Romney is out of touch with the American people, and he verified that by choosing Paul Ryan as his running mate. He may have energized the base, but he alienated the last demographic that may have supported his candidacy and whether he knows it or not, he also gave Paul Ryan three months of exposure that will please the Heritage Foundation. He also gave Democrats more ammunition than they could have dreamed of to add to their calls for him to release his tax returns, explain his record of outsourcing American jobs, and tell Americans why he hides his money in offshore accounts. Romney had a bad week that just got much worse and he is too arrogant to understand that picking Ryan was as ill-advised as alienating women, Hispanics, working Americans, and now senior citizens, but at least the Heritage Foundation still loves him.

11 Replies to “Mission Accomplished: Romney Alienates the Last Demographic Support He Had”

  1. Even though Ryan claims his medicare plan would only affect people born in 1958 and later, the disabled and elderly receiving medicare coverage now understand what a slippery slope is.

    What middle class worker or small business owner born before 1958 would want to see their children denied benefits that they and their cildren worked most of their lives for, denied to their children. It’s absurd.

  2. If Ryan pisses off all demographics except white, rich males, how in the hell can the GOP heritage folks think he can win in 2016? They may believe they are thinking long range but personally I think they are committing suicide.
    My 70 something grand father was seriously thinking of voting for Rmoney but not now. Ryan scares the crap out of him and if something should happen to Willard in office, Ryan is the next in line for the presidency.

  3. “and his assault on the poor that he refers to as “takers” ruins any chance of support from minorities and working poor Americans hardest hit by the Republican economy.”

    Except for the millions that will vote against their best interests for partisan reasons, and there are plenty of those.

  4. I was born in 1960;my sister and my brothers were born after me.

    Time to start calling vouchers “chump change coupons.”

  5. It’s even worse than that. In Ryan’s plan, by 2022, Medicare eligibility age will raise to 67 years old. There by leaving seniors ages 65 and 66 WITH NO HEALTHCARE! What senior is going to be able to find healthcare that they can afford (they would repeal ACA, too) with, most likely, having preexisting conditions? All but the wealthy would be without the lifesaving care they need…one illness would decimate their savings…home, and family. Oh look! Death Panels! It is a selfish, callous nasty view of the part of America they want to ignore. They MUST be defeated…handily…and all the House idiots with them, in November!!

  6. The purpose of the Republican Party is to DESTROY EVERYTHING the Democratic Party and few moderate Republicans have accomplished.

  7. We still don’t know what Ryans’s plan will be for FICA taxes, if he gets his voucher system, for those under 55 will go. Knowing the repubs., they will cut the percentage paid in or stop it for anyone under 55. This will basically defund the main Medicare program as it may be supported only by those over 55 to 67. It destroys Medicare thru attrition. Also, because of this, Ryan may raise monthly premium of Part B by 100% or more and double deductibles. Again, this passes more cost onto already strapped seniors who will also be looking at cuts in SS of 25% with lower or no COLA.
    Yep, Ryan has the plan that will make Medicare and SS die because of being slowly defunded. That may be in the Heritage Plan, as well.

  8. I just read on Politico that Ryan was supposed to be in FL tomorrow, but now he’s headed to Iowa! Hmmm, I wonder why? Could it be because Romney was forced overnight to re-endorse the Ryan Plan that destroys Medicare as we know it, and because the Romney campaign needs time to figure out how to sell something that is bad for them to millions of seniors who live in FL? Something tells me I might be right about this one.

    http://www.politico.com/blogs/burns-haberman/2012/08/a-view-of-ryan-from-florida-131855.html

  9. I was born in 1963, put myself through College with Student loans, then worked most of a working life. I had a stroke when I was 45, due to undiagnosed Cancer, then lost the ability to work in my job, as well as the majority of my speaking voice. I AM permanently disabled and YES his policies would affect me. I paid into the system the higher rate the majority of my life and am very grateful for the help. Something tells ME that Romney will go down in flames trying to sell this. Or it will be a long, ugly fight to the finish-just like the teatards like it.

  10. I have only one slight issue with the author on the well-written article: the GOP pissed off Seniors during the debt-ceiling fiasco last year by proposing huge and Draconian cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, even though none of those programs adds to the deficit; there are truly just two voting blocs left for the GOP to exploit: angry rich old white men (and their offspring) and ignorant, idiotic and uneducated poor and middle-class white folk who vote against their own best interests and for the GOP. That’s it….there’s not nearly enough of them to get Mittens elected….
    Oh, and another thing: as Lawrence O’Donnell said on his show tonight (it’s still Monday here), Mittens’ choice of Eddie kills Munster’s political career; so far, no losing vice-presidential candidate has ever been voted President later; besides, do you really think that, if Eddie does run in 2016, that his opponent(s) won’t remind voters of his budget plan and other conservative plans? I know I’ll do everything I can to remind people of that.
    VP Biden is going to wipe the floor with Munster the fascist corporate plutarch Punk from Wisconsin in the VP debate…I just hope that Munster doesn’t say anything stupid like, “I’m just like JFK”, as J. Danforth Quayle did many years ago LMAO

  11. Thank you, Rmuse for underscoring what most thinking Americans already know. Ryan hasn’t fooled anyone with his “budget” and Seniors have identified him as an enemy thereby further weakening the Romney Titanic (campaign).

    Romney has made a huge mistake here. The uproar among conservatives has supporters hitting the blogs with fervor before frothing at the mouth and the inevitable cranial explosions.

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